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Full text of "Verdict On India"

WHITE AXB OFF-WHITE                          225
poor recompense for poverty, or a reversion to type.. .a marriage
into an Indian household. And that is usuallv a step to be bitterly
regretted, for her Indian relations despise and distrust her, they
can never regard her as wone of us." If a son is born to her. and if*
as sometimes happens, he is as white as his grandfather, his posi-
tion is doubly invidious. Even by the Anglo-Indian Catholic
Nchools he is regarded as an outsider. He grows up disillusioned,
embittered ; with the approach of manhood he takes a perverse
delight in degrading himself, drinking with the scum of the city,
fighting in the native brothels, hanging round the docks and the
wharves, spitting out oaths in the lowest Hindi, like a tragic Kim
who has lost his way in life.
For the men of the first generation, who can boasts of an, English
i'ather, it is not so bad. To ensure that their status is respected—
officially if not socially—a fair proportion of posts is reserved for
them in the public services, particularly in the police and on the
railways. Some of them, by exceptional merit have risen, to posi-
tions of eminence and wealth. For the greater part of the Anglo-
-Indian community, however, the future is none too bright; and
though one has every sympathy with them, it must be admitted
that their troubles are partly of their own, making. Owing to their
deep-rooted inferiority complex they are fanatically insistent upon
their superiority to their Indian cousins; they lose no opportunity
of setting themselves apart; they carry their protestations of
"loyalty* to a ludicrous extreme ; they axe plus roydliste que le roi.
To a certain extent this unhappy state of affairs must be con-
sidered a reflection on British rule. It is a consequence, or rather
a survival, of the 1857 mentality, when Indians were 'a lot of
damned natives * and when the idea that we were trustees for their
well-being was still the monopoly of a few eccentrics. The Dutch
never adopted this attitude, which has proved as unprofitable as
it is iixhumane; from the first they encouraged inter-marriage
between the two races, with the result that the Eurasian com-
munity in the Dutch colonies is virile and self-respecting, and has,
indeed, been one of the most stabilizing influences in the Dutch.
What would have happened if wo had followed the Dutch
example ? If by a supreme effort of imagination, we had married